You don’t need to spend a thousand dollars to get a new hoverboard. I mean, it doesn’t hover anyway; it’s basically a plank with two wheels and a bit of technology to balance it. Nothing you can’t whip up in your garage on a Sunday with a little DIY spirit. At the very least, it makes a winning science project for school.
What you’ll need to build your own Hoverboard :
- 2 toy Motors. The more heavy duty ones work better.
- 2 Wheels. Visit the toy shop and scavenge.
- Wooden Plank with some to spare
- A Saw
- Laptop batteries or other slim but powerful enough batteries you can find.
- Trolley wheels
- Some nuts, screws and industrial glue. Other types of strong glue is fine too.
- Craft supplies like markers, pencils, measuring tape or rulers, and some spray paint. Regular paint works too
- Pressure switches, which will pass more current the more they are pressed. You can find these at the hardware store.
How to begin making your own Hoverboard :
Let’s first get the preparation out of the way. Here’s what to do.
1. On the plank, make measurements as mentioned. A central line should bisect the board along the width. At the two edges, leaving enough space for your feet (and some to spare, perhaps), measure the thickness of the wheel and make a demarcation going inside from the end. Note that the width of the plank should be more than the wheels’ diameter. These are the slots for the wheels, and you want them protected on either side.
2. Once the markings are done, cut out the slots for the wheels. You may also cut an angle from the central line to make a V shaped indent and give it a nice appearance, though it isn’t necessary.
3. Cut open the laptop batteries and rearrange the cells so they fit under the plank approximately under your feet.
4. Take measurement of your motors’ thickness (to thicknesses, for some builds). Drill holes of that dimension into planks of wood. You’re going to glue these under the plank, so don’t leave more than a centimeter of space on side of the holes.
5. Take a long, slim piece of wood on adequate thickness. Drill holes on both ends of it and attach trolley wheels in these using some industrial glue. This will be what balances your hoverboard.
How to assemble your own Hoverboard : Step By Step
Now, for the assembly. Get your glue, and you are ready to begin.
1. Glue the wooden planks drilled with holes to hold the motors under the plank of wood, right next to the wheel slots. Make sure the holes line up in a straight line, and the motor fits properly, facing outside. We’ll call this assembly wheel holders.
2. If you make a mistake, you can dissolve the glue with some solvent, dry the wood and try again. No need to hurry.
3. Glue the balance shaft (the piece of wood in step 5 of the preparation) under the wooden plank. Don’t do this over, or you’ll end up with shabby results and a jagged ride.
4. Use some glue on the edge of the motor to attach it inside the wheel holders. Next, Put the wheels on the motors’ shafts using some putty. Make sure you give each wheel adequate time to fix, and that they fix perpendicular to the shaft as desired. You can also make washers with round pieces of wood that go on either side of the wheel. Glue these together sandwiching the wheel and penetrated by the shaft of the motor.
5. Glue the rearranged batteries under the plank, with wires pointing in the direction you’re going to be facing while riding.
6. Get your pressure switches out and glue them firmly to the front end of the plank.
7. Wire the batteries to the motor with the pressure switch in between. Test each circuit.
8. Tape the wires out of the way, so they don’t tangle on the way. Keep the ends of the battery in the open, so you can connect a wire from the electric supply and charge them. It is best to use a 12 V adapter for this purpose, or an adapter of the effective voltage your batteries supply.
9. That’s it! Paint the contraption in any funky shade and you’re good to go.
Some even put in beepers or LEDs to give the hovercraft a fancier feeling. If you can make that work, try it out!